Designer fruit, 'bling' water

Designer food items have come to Kelowna and their prices have some people scratching their heads.

Urban Fare has been selling square watermelons for a couple of years now. The angular fruit, which is grown in a glass box, is imported from Japan. 

They cost $200 each.

"A square tempered-glass box is placed around the watermelon when it's still small on the vine," said Michel at Urban Fare, who did not want to use his last name. 

They're easier to stack, which makes them easier to ship. Apparently the melons are grown this way to fit more easily into Japanese fridges, which are smaller than fridges in Canada.

What was born of necessity on the other side of the world is a novelty item here. 

"No, people aren't buying them. They're $200," said Michel. "Last year we sold some - sometimes businesses buy them. We sent some to Toronto last year and they sell more in Vancouver." 

They did have some more success with smaller, cheaper square melons that had come from China, he said.

Beyond the shape and price, it's just a regular watermelon. It tastes the same, or perhaps not even as good as a local watermelon since these square ones have traversed the globe.

Urban Fare donates them to different events and uses them for samples. 

And $200 watermelons are not where the talking-piece food items stop.

Urban Fare is also currently selling "Bling water" which brings Tennesse mountain spring water in gem-encrusted bottles to the table. 

"The one bottle we have is covered in Swarovski crystals and it's $2,800," said Michel.

Apparently there are 10,000 hand-placed crystals on the wine-bottle sized vessel. 

They have other bling bottles that vary in size and the number of crystals that adorn the outside.

They have corks, and people buy them to reuse the bottle he said. 

"Those were brought in as more of a talking piece. There are also platinum, gold, and silver bottles. One is gold and covered in spikes."


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